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Chris Cooley believes Kirk Cousins could produce 'exactly the same' as Matt Ryan in Kyle Shanahan offense

Chris Cooley believes Kirk Cousins could produce 'exactly the same' as Matt Ryan in Kyle Shanahan offense

It's not too hard to imagine a scenario where Kirk Cousins plays for Kyle Shanahan. It's a reach, sure, but not impossible. Currently the offensive coordinator in Atlanta, Shanahan is a candidate for a number of head coaching jobs, and Cousins could become a free agent in March. 

If Shanahan lands a head coaching gig, his team could work to trade for Cousins if Washington again deploys the franchise tag. And should Cousins hit free agency, however unlikely, Shanahan's team could make a run at signing him. Before we get any further, this hypothetical situation requires a lot of moving parts, and it seems likely the Redskins at least franchise Cousins. 

RELATED: Five possible free agents for the Redskins

The pairing of Cousins and Shanahan in 2017 is a long shot, certainly. But on Wednesday, ESPN980's Chris Cooley talked about how the Redskins quarterback might perform in Shanahan's offensive system.

"Not any quarterback could be put into Kyle’s system, but I'll tell you this right this second because I know you’re going to ask this before this ends, how would Kirk do in this system?" Cooley said. "Exactly the same as Matt Ryan. He would do exactly the same as Matt Ryan."

This season, Ryan threw for 4,944 yards, completing nearly 70 percent of his passes to go with 38 touchdowns to just seven interceptions. Cousins' stats are somewhat similar, he completed 67 percent of his passes and threw for 4,917 yards, but he lagged well behind in touchdowns with 25 and tossed five more INTs.

Looking at the numbers, it's not hard to think Cousins could replicate Ryan's production. Cousins nearly mirrored those stats this year in the Redskins system designed by Jay Gruden and Sean McVay. 

The former 'Skins tight end spoke glowingly of Shanahan's offensive system, particularly of the Falcons commitment a balanced run and pass attack. A well established run game opens up the pass, especially in play action, and Atlanta does a great job on screen passes as well. 

The connections between Kyle Shanahan and Kirk Cousins are fairly obvious to 'Skins fan. Kyle's dad Mike drafted Cousins in Washington in 2012, and the senior Shanahan speaks highly of Cousins almost every chance he gets. And in a way, Cousins already played in Shanahan's system. He started one game in 2012 when Robert Griffin III was injured, and had more chances in 2013, though that offense the Redskins ran under Shanahan is not the same as the system being used in Atlanta now. 

Also worth pointing out that a number of teams would pursue Cousins should he hit the free agent market, regardless what happens with Kyle Shanahan. Many of the most QB needy teams, like the Jets and Bears as examples, aren't looking for new coaches.

Should Shanahan land a new job, it's no lock that team would be in the market for a QB. It's even less of a possibility that Cousins will hit free agency. What is clear though, between the numbers and Cooley's comments, is that Cousins playing in a Shanahan offense could move the ball at an elite rate.  


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With Kyler Murray drafted in Arizona, Redskins ready to pursue Josh Rosen, per source

With Kyler Murray drafted in Arizona, Redskins ready to pursue Josh Rosen, per source

The Redskins will be in the hunt to trade for Rosen, according to league sources. 

During the NFL Scouting Combine the Redskins were connected with Rosen heavily, but over the last two months, some of that momentum seemed to cool. 

Other teams will surely be looking to trade for Rosen, and that could include the New York Giants.

Update: The Giants used the No. 6 overall pick to select Duke QB Daniel Jones, taking them out of the running for Rosen.

Other teams reportedly interested would be the Dolphins, Chargers and the Patriots. 

As the first round unfolds, a lot of clues will be given about which teams will be looking to add the former UCLA star. As other quarterbacks get drafted tonight - including players like Dwayne Haskins, Drew Lock and Daniel Jones - that likely will eliminate those teams from contention for Rosen. 

ESPN reported that Arizona is content going into the season with Murray and Rosen on their roster, but that seems like a bluff, according to folks around the league. 


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NFL Draft 2019 Redskins live blog: First round draft updates, analysis

NFL Draft 2019 Redskins live blog: First round draft updates, analysis

The 2019 NFL Draft is finally upon us. You can trash the mock drafts and take a break from the Twitter rumors as we'll soon know what each team is really planning.

Tonight, Thursday, April 25, NFL teams will look to find their next franchise player in the form of the most talented college prospects in the country.

Taking place in Nashville, Tennessee, this year's draft promises to be as exciting as ever with numerous storylines dominating the event. Will Kyler Murray go No. 1? Where will the other QBs fall, and will a team move up to grab one? What defensive players go first? All these questions and more will be answered soon enough.

The Arizona Cardinals will kick off the festivities at 8:00 p.m. ET as they possess the first overall pick in the draft.

As for the Redskins, they'll be picking at No. 15, though there has been no shortage of rumors that a move could be made to climb up the order.

Once the commissioner takes the stage, all predictions go out the window. Luckily, we'll have you covered with all the picks, trades and moves here in the live blog and draft tracker.

NFL Draft 2019 Redskins First-Round Tracker and Live Updates:

DRAFT PICK: No. 7 - Jacksonville Jaguars (LB Josh Allen, Kentucky): Sacksonville just gained its newest member and became even scarier in the process. Josh Allen may not fill a glaring hole for the Jaguars, but he fell in their lap and No. 7 and it became a situation where you take the best player available. Joining Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue, opposing quarterbacks better beware. 

DRAFT PICK: No. 6 - New York Giants (QB Daniel Jones, Duke): Here's our first "wow" moment of the draft. It wasn't even a given that the Giants were going to go with a quarterback at No.6, but it looks like they are going all in on Duke product Daniel Jones. The passer shot up draft boards as Thursday approached, and now he finds himself as the newest QB in the NFC East. At 6'5'', Jones could be viewed as more athletic Eli Manning. He also had the same coach that the Manning's had in David Cutcliffe. We know New York loves Eli, so maybe this pick makes perfect sense.

DRAFT PICK: No. 5 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers (ILB Devin White, LSU): Losing Kwon Alexander in the offseason, the Bucs may have just found his replacement in Devin White. A talented linebacker, White is in line to become the centerpiece of a Tampa Bay defense that features Gerald McCoy and JPP up front and Todd Bowles at the helm.

DRAFT PICK: No. 4 - Oakland Raiders (DE Clelin Ferrell, Clemson): Well with Jon Gruden at the helm, you can't really consider anything a surprise. However, Clelin Ferrell at No. 4 is something not many saw coming. The defensive end from Clemson is incredibly talented, but the Raiders passing on the likes of Josh Allen and Ed Oliver makes you think twice. Oakland still has two more picks tonight. 

DRAFT PICK: No. 3 - New York Jets (DT Quinnen Williams, Alabama): After making some big offseason additions, the Jets use their draft pick to upgrade the defense by selecting Quinnen Williams. With eight sacks and 71 tackles in 2018, Williams was a standout on a loaded Crimson Tide roster. New York added free agent C.J. Mosley to lead their linebacking core, and now Williams makes the line of that defense a lot scarier.

DRAFT PICK: No. 2 - San Francisco 49ers (DE Nick Bosa, Ohio State): The first defensive player in a loaded class is Nick Bosa, as the 49ers use yet another first round pick on a defensive line addition. Bosa only played in three games this season before an injury led to him sitting out the rest of the year, but the former Buckeye will still provide an immediate positive impact up front for San Francisco. 

DRAFT PICK: No. 1 - Arizona Cardinals (QB Kyler Murray, Oklahoma): Not a huge surprise, the Cardinals have selected Kyler Murray No. 1 overall. Murray is the second consecutive Oklahoma passer to go first in the draft, following in the steps of Baker Mayfield.

With a new head coach in Kliff Kingsbury, it looks as if Arizona is ready to start the new regime with a new man at the helm of the offense. There will be concerns about his height, but there's no denying his passing skills and athleticism. Now the main question becomes: What happens to Josh Rosen?

8:13 p.m. The Arizona Cardinals are officially on the clock. Here. We. Go. 

7:02 p.m. Could the Redskins be looking to move up in the draft and grab Duke QB Daniel Jones? According to JP Finlay, that seems unlikely. While rumors earlier in the week suggested Washington could potentially climb from No.15, that doesn't look to be the case anymore.

6:30 p.m. Less than two hours until the clock starts ticking, there's plenty of information to get caught up on. Here's what you need to know: